Dear Mom and Dad,
Given I have had chemo the last 2 days and fell asleep before 8pm last night, I am now up at 2:30am. As I was laying in bed I began thinking of both of you and how you have been by my side over the past 2 1/ 2 month's. No words will ever be able to explain the gratitude in my heart for your support and love as I have battled an illness that I and you never ever imagined I would be diagnosed with.
Through my tears, I will never forget the look of sorrow, yet strength on mom's face as we sat in Dr. Klomps office as he gave me a life threatening diagnosis. But I will never forget the feeling of peace that I had and the strength in your arms as you wrapped your arms around me as we cried. I can't imagine the pain and sorrow you both felt knowing your first born child, even though she is an adult had a disease that might take her life at such a young age. I am grateful for the worthy priesthood holder that my dad is, for the blessings he has been able to bless me with, for his strength, courage and love as he brings our family together in prayer each night.
I am ever so grateful for the long nights and days that you spent with me in the hospital as you watched me go from healthy to dreadfully ill. I can't imagine the heartache it must have been to watch your daughter become so helpless, as she couldn't even do the simplest daily acts. Mom has told me this is the most difficult thing she has ever experienced, even harder than losing her mother at age 23, which I can't imagine.
Thank you for your support, for your mighty strength, your heartfelt, pleading prayers, your faith, courage, silently crying in front of me and crying behind closed doors so that you remained strong in front of me, but also at times crying with me, for drying my many, many tears and telling me we will get through this.
Thank you for doing my laundry, fixing my meals, making sure I take my pills and stay hydrated, walking with me, making sure I get enough sleep, getting up with me to shower in the middle of the night because of a leaking ileostomy (so not cool), rubbing my feet and my back, patting my feet and telling me, "You are going to be okay; you WILL win this battle." Thank you for telling me that I'm beautiful without hair, even though I sometimes don't feel so, that I'm not my hair and that it's the person that I am and the heart that I have who is ME!
Thank you for your faith in a loving Heavenly Father who you know hears our prayers and the thousands of prayers in our behalf. Thank you for giving me the courage to live each day to the fullest so that I can be an example to many of determination and hard work through difficult trials. Thank you for teaching your children the gospel of Jesus Christ; for instilling in each of us the principles of the gospel, of teaching us to serve others through your examples and showing us that true joy comes from serving those around us, but also teaching us that others need to be blessed by serving our family at this time. Thank you for teaching us to pray; for having morning and evening prayers with us from the time we were born and that continues now, to study the scriptures to find answers to our prayers, to have virtue, integrity and faith, to be hard workers, to have determination, but most of all teaching us love and charity which is the true love of Christ.
I love each of you so much and am so grateful Heavenly Father gave me you to lead me, guide me and walk beside me in this life and through this and so many other trials I have experienced in my life. May you feel Heavenly Fathers consistent love as you continue to parent each of us and teach us through our adult lives. You are so loved by many, especially me!